Presidency finalising Electricity Minister’s powers

President Cyril Ramaphosa is finalising the powers of the newly appointed Minister in the Presidency for Electricity, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa.

Addressing a media briefing on Sunday, Presidential Spokesperson Vincent Magwenya said that the newly appointed Minister has “hit the ground running.”

President Ramaphosa announced Ramokgopa’s appointment during an address to the nation on 6 March 2023.

Responding to a question, Magwenya said since his appointment the Minister has been engaging various stakeholders.

“The powers of the Minister are being finalised, they are awaiting the President’s signature subject to any further engagements that the President may deem fit,” Magwenya said.

He added that the Minister will be visiting a number of power stations starting from tomorrow.

Still on the energy front, Magwenya said that the President had noted progress in such areas as the opening of a bid window for a 513 megawatts (MW) of battery storage capacity as part of the country’s response to the energy challenge.

The President also welcomed a regulatory exemption granted to Eskom by the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Barbara Creecy, that will later this year allow Kusile Power Station to resume generation capacity of 2 100 megawatts (MW) which will reduce South Africa’s exposure to load-shedding by two levels.

Magwenya also updated the public on the President’s public programme for the week as well as on topical issues of public and media interest.

On the economic front, the President has praised the signing of a Memorandum Of Understanding between the automotive company Stellantis South Africa, the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) to develop a new vehicle manufacturing facility in South Africa.

Stellantis sells Jeep, Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Citroën, Opel and Peugeot brands in South Africa.

“An investment of this nature is an acknowledgment of our country’s world-class manufacturing capacity in the automotive sector, it will deepen the industrialisation of our economy, and, most importantly, it will create more jobs.”

The President was also encouraged by the export numbers from, Minister Ebrahim Patel when he presented the DTIC’s Quarter 3 report to Parliament.

President’s diary

Meanwhile, the President is expected to lead the national Human Rights Day commemoration under the theme “Consolidating and Sustaining Human Rights Culture into the Future,” in the Northern Cape.

The history of Human Rights Day is grounded in the Sharpeville Massacre that took place on the 21 of March 1960, where apartheid police killed 69 anti-apartheid protesters.

On Wednesday, the President will chair a meeting of the National Security Council as part of government’s regular cycle of assessing matters of national and international security.

“These deliberations allow security services to take decisions and act in ways that keep us safe in our homes, streets and workplaces, and that allow our economy to move forward in the way we illustrated earlier,” he said.

Wednesday will also mark the beginning of an historic State Visit with the arrival of His Majesty King Philippe and Her Majesty Queen Mathilda of The Kingdom of Belgium in South Africa.

This will be the first State Visit to South Africa by the Belgian monarchy. President Ramaphosa’s invitation to His Majesty and Her Majesty underscores the strong bilateral relations that exist between the two countries.

In addition, the President will on Tuesday 28 March address the Localisation Dinner function of the Proudly South African Buy Local Summit and Expo.

The Buy Local Summit 2023 highlights sectors that impact positively on the economy and job creation, including furniture, agro-processing, fast-moving consumer goods, clothing, textiles, footwear and leather.

At the dinner, the President will interact with CEOs and captains of industry who will report on existing localisation activities and pledge further escalation of localisation within their companies’ procurement choices.

On Thursday, 30 March 2023, the President will brief the National Council of Provinces on issues raised by members in questions for oral reply.

Source: South African Government News Agency

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